New design for Genii Forum

All beginners in magic should address their questions here.

Postby Guest » 07/14/07 09:56 PM

Brad,

Congratulations on the handsome new look. The colors are elegant.

Earle
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Postby Guest » 07/14/07 10:36 PM

In my opinion, these colors look much worse than the previous. Not as professional looking I guess you might say.

They also make my eyes hurt.

Now calm down, this is just my humble opinion, so don't bite my head off. ;)
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Postby Guest » 07/14/07 10:49 PM

The stark black/white/grey is very hard on the eyes.
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Postby Guest » 07/14/07 10:58 PM

Really digging the retro "early 90s" BBS look. Hard to read and it looks like a thousand other low rent magic boards, but that's part of the charm.

:D
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Postby Guest » 07/14/07 11:03 PM

:eek:
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 07/14/07 11:17 PM

My old, decrepit eyes are finding it easier to read. You know, I suspect that theres a reason why all ten of the top ten Fortune 500 companies websites have stark white as their primary background. Same thing for other low rent sites like CNN, MSNBC, the New York Times...(I would like to see a sharper contrast in this gray background--maybe a lighter shade of gray.)
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Postby Guest » 07/14/07 11:23 PM

Edited to say: It's growing on me.

Edit: no, I tried. It's pretty bad.

Sorry. I know you guys put months of thought into the new layout.
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 01:44 AM

IMHO the main masthead is attractive but not the rest, list of forums and onward. Furthermore black on grey is not very legible or kind to the eyes. Whether or not any market research (subscribers' opinions) was done earlier, the postings now provide it.
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 03:32 AM

Caveat: I had nothing to do with the redesign...

The white backgrounds on most corporate sites are essential for anyone printing out content (and yes, many people still do).

I agree that the contrasting gray/black can be difficult for some to read. The problem with reducing the saturation of the gray (making it, well, less gray) is that the hyperlinks will become even less visible than they are currently.

The layout hasn't fundamentally changed, merely the color scheme (with elements added in to bring the forum in line visually with the print product: note the "New Topic", "Post a Poll" and "Post New Topic" buttons as well as with the rest of the Genii website--the masthead).

I haven't fully formed an opinion, but I think it is promising to see that the "experience" of forum guests is being considered and adopted.
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 04:12 AM

Simply put, I like it. It feels very crisp.

As with any website update, within a couple days I'll get used to the changes and it will feel just as comfortable as the old layout.

All I ask is that you never make it green. ;)


e
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 04:16 AM

I have no problem reading anything and like the portions that fit the print medium now.
For books I prefer yellow-ish paper and do not like shiny white paper (like in the Vernon Chronicles for example...), but on websites it is ok for me.
If white/gray turns out to be disliked by many, one could try yellow/orange again, maybe the same colours as in the buttons on the very top right hand side. Then it would still all fit together.

Denis
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Postby Steve Bryant » 07/15/07 05:28 AM

Bravo! Love the new look.
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 07:00 AM

2 cents...

I prefer the new color scheme over the older as I am one the ones that also find it much easier to read; VERY much easier actually. I'm not sure why it DOES make such a very big difference....

I agree with others that it looks "cleaner" and disagree with those that compare it to older or cheaper sites. There is still plenty of different colors to avoid monotony...just not where the text exists (ie. the main focus).

Everybody will NEVER likely agree...(or is that NOBODY will EVER likely agree?!)...damn that grammar anyway! ;)

Michael
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 07:37 AM

Thumbs up: Design; blue; white

Thumbs down: Black text on relatively dark gray
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Postby Joe Pecore » 07/15/07 09:14 AM

Are you also working on supporting an RSS or Atom feed?
Share your knowledge on the MagicPedia wiki.
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 09:33 AM

The most easily read type is black on yellow.
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 10:25 AM

I wonder. Is this really a new layout? Or is this a generic template color right out of the box? It looks very much like where Whit started with his forum before we started "tweaking" it.

I agree it's easier to read, and for the printout thing, the grey usually goes away leaving black on white text. If anything they might lighten up the grey a bit for older (dimmer) monitors where the grey looks even darker.

I heard about the black on yellow thing too from a billboard advertising company. It might make for a good contrast, but I found it harder on my eyes reading this forum over extended lengths of time. This one seems to be easier, at least for me.
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 10:34 AM

Looks good to me!

Andrew
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 10:37 AM

The lighter gray (now showing) is huge improvement.

Still looks a bit "2002 generic default forums template", but overall readability is improved with nicer contrast due to the lighter gray.

Though perhaps just smidge darker (somewhere between the very dark former gray and the new 'can hardly see it' gray)would set off each post a bit better and still keep good contrast.
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 12:25 PM

This gray looks just fine.

Personally, I can easily tell where one post ends and another starts. The issue is the black-on-gray contrast and the lighter the better, especially for those of us over 50.
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Postby Jim Maloney_dup1 » 07/15/07 12:27 PM

Hey Chris -- what happened to the "take a few days to get used to it" attitude you had when you switched over your forum a few months back?

;)

-Jim
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 12:36 PM

Jim,

We've seen this basic color scheme (and it's just a color tweak, not an actual layout change with additional features as seen in the updates of other forums) on default forums templates going back at least 3-4 years. I even ran (or moderated) a non magic forum back in the day that used something very similar right out of the box.

So, I feel I've already had plenty of time to get used to this color scheme on other forums that have have long since moved on... ;)

The lighter gray does do wonders for the contrast problem though. It's readable now, which I appreciate.
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 07/15/07 12:42 PM

Yes, after reading a few of your posts, I asked Brad to lighten the gray, which he has done. The only reason there is gray at all is to differentiate between posts (and between topics), and I think the subtle gray does the job.
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 01:00 PM

Actually, on further consideration, subtle is ok. I use it myself on my forums, albeit in slightly more colorful manner.

The white/light grey combo here is a huge improvement over the previous yellow color scheme.
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Postby Jim Maloney_dup1 » 07/15/07 01:01 PM

See, Chris? Just give it time... ;)

-Jim
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 01:20 PM

When I considered the old "urine yellow" theme, it made it much easier (and didn't take long) to see this (with the lighter gray) as a marked improvement.
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 07/15/07 02:50 PM

My raggedy old eyes are even happier now! Thanks Brad!!!
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Postby Guest » 07/15/07 03:49 PM

I still prefer the yellow but this new shade of gray is much better. My eyes don't strain as much.
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Postby Ruben Padilla » 07/15/07 09:49 PM

There was something familiar about the yellow. When I saw the (old) forum come up, I felt like I was in a local hangout. Yeah, the pictures on the wall might be fading and the place smells of cigarettes, the jukebox only plays songs that are over ten years old, but it feels good.

I miss the yellow...
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Postby Guest » 07/16/07 10:09 AM

Psychologists who study Color Theory would have fun reading the various posts regarding the new look.

The stark whiteness heightens awareness...although it may remind one of interrogation rooms, bus-stations, hospitals...it's so abundantly neon. The lines of type starkly lie on an antiseptic bed of whiteness...awaiting our autopsies or awakening massages of rant, cant, and info-that-can-no-longer-be-contained.

Me?
I gaze at the New Forum through my rose-colored shades, listening to Mozart...

hearing the familiar voices of the usual suspects...

Thanks for the tweaking, Brad.

Onward...
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Postby Anthony Blake » 07/16/07 11:33 AM

A few days ago I came here and was blasted out of my seat... WOW!... that's bright!

Gone was the well accustomed yellow and in it's place was a nice layout of muted blue (looks purple to me), grey and white... a bit antiseptic and bland but somehow it works... it did take a few visits to get used to the new layout... it's a workable change that I think will grow on all the old "visitors" fairly quickly...

Now, a small bit of advice from someone who owns and runs over 4000 websites including several quite successful "community" sites... on a site like this forum where people tend to spend some time viewing and reading what has been posted I (and assistants) have found that the stark white, strict "FFFFFF" coded background can be quite tiring for the eyes... it burns into the retinas and tires the viewer after a short while, mainly because white tends to "flouresce" on the monitor... on LCD monitors it can be blazingly bright and on standard CRT monitors the flicker rate combined with the whiteness causes "retinal burn-out"...

We have discovered that having the page be slightly off-white lessen's the tired eyes syndrome and lets visitors stay on the site longer... the off-white is barely noticable but it does make a difference... using the off-white along with the muted blue and grey will make a nicer "user experience" for visitors and won't leave them as drained in the end...

Hope this helps...

Success!!!

Tony Blake
The Thoughtreader
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Postby Guest » 07/16/07 02:26 PM

Well, the color scheme is less :eek: now, but I think Ruben put it very well - the yellow really said " :genii: " to me.
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Postby Guest » 07/16/07 05:41 PM

The color scheme is much better now. The old was way too contrasty. One of Edward Tufte's rules for multiple items in a single composition -- like multiple posts in a forum window -- is to use the smallest effective difference. The way the forum works now, with alternate entries shaded, is better than, for example, lines between each entry, as the shading makes for a less intrusive boundry. But that's only true if the shading is subtle. When the forum went to the current look, that shading was far too strong for my taste. Today it looks much better.

I'm assuming this is a conscious choice, and if so well done. The white colors of the website now match the magazine much better than yellow did, which is something. (Except what's with the button bar to the right of the main logo at the top of this page? Where did those colors come from?)

By the way, everyone interested in web design should read the work of Edward Tufte. Besides, he has a whole chapter in Visual Explanations on how magicians use the techniques of visual representation for the opposite of their normal purpose, co-written by Jamy Ian Swiss. It includes Richard's infamous six-finger salute to Ed Mishell.
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Postby Guest » 07/16/07 09:08 PM

I like the new layout. The header is too big imho, we already know we are at genii!

But, shame the BLOODY quote button hasn't been fixed!

I don't get this. It's been broken for MONTHS now.

Is it deliberately disabled?
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 07/16/07 09:18 PM

No, it is enabled. It's got to be a bug in the software.
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Postby Guest » 07/17/07 11:31 AM

But, shame the BLOODY quote button hasn't been fixed!
Yes, Dustin, can you PLEASE do something about fixing the quote button?
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Postby Jim Maloney_dup1 » 07/17/07 11:38 AM

Re: the quote button

I've e-mailed Brad about it and we're looking into it...stay tuned.

-Jim
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